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If you like affordable health care, you won’t like what’s in the TPP

Judit Rius

What is the TPP, you ask?

The Trans-Pacific Partnership, of course! What, you didn’t know? That’s because, despite it being a huge trade agreement between over a dozen Pacific Rim countries, from the United States to Chile to Vietnam, it’s being negotiated in secret. And yet it’s going to affect agriculture, manufacturing, copyright, healthcare – just about everything.

The last item is of particular concern to the intrepid group Doctors Without Borders (also known as Medecins Sans Frontieres or MSF), which works in dozens of countries around the world delivering healthcare in difficult circumstances. On today’s podcast with speak with Judit Rius, MSF’s US Access Campaign Manager, about why the group is so alarmed by aspects of the TPP, which it says could be “the most harmful trade pact ever for access to medicines” in an open letter to President Obama.

We’ve covered the TPP before on Humanosphere, including activist efforts to oppose it and wonky arguments against it. But Judit explains just how dangerous the TPP is for the sick and infirm around the world, as well as the significance of brand new disclosures from WikiLeaks that show how isolated the US government is in its trade demands.

In the headlines portion, Tom P. and I discuss why clinical trials of important medicines have ground to halt in India (spoiler: it’s not the TPP’s fault) and whether Nicholas Kristof is right about how aid works, or whether it does at all, in Haiti.

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About Author

Ansel Herz

Ansel Herz is a freelance multimedia journalist whose objective is to “go to where the silence is." His work has been published by ABC News, The Nation magazine, the New York Daily News, Al Jazeera English, Free Speech Radio News, Inter-Press News and many other publications. A Seattle native and survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Ansel is producer of Humanosphere's podcast, among other things. You can contact him at ansel.herz[at] or follow him on Twitter @Ansel.